Using a New TV with an Old TiVo

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by Hot4Bo, Jan 5, 2012.

  1. Jan 5, 2012 #1 of 52
    Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    OK, you should know, I love new electronics with one exception. I love my old school square non-widescreen TVs. I use them with my S2 single tuner TiVos and all is well. I have basic cable through a tuning adapter into my TiVo and out to the TV.

    Unfortunately, my 36" TV stopped getting a picture today, which leads to my dilemma. If I buy a new HDTV (probably plasma based on preliminary research and price), what are the consequences here? I am not concerned with seeing things in HD and I am not upgrading my basic cable now. Will I have bars on the screen? Will things look distorted? Will my TiVo even work with a new TV?

    My family thinks I am crazy because I have been very resistant to buying a widescreen TV because every one I have seen makes people look short and fat. The CBS eye looks like a football. Words run off the side of the screen instead of being contained in the viewable area. Are they not set right or is it me?

    Can someone please help me figure this out?
     
  2. Jan 5, 2012 #2 of 52
    cannonz

    cannonz Well-Known Member

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    On craigslist you can get tube Sony XBR's 32 and 36 inch very cheap, have beautiful pictures. They are very heavy though.
     
  3. Jan 5, 2012 #3 of 52
    Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    Yes, I know they are heavy. I'm still not sure how I'm getting the old TV out of here. LOL
     
  4. Jan 5, 2012 #4 of 52
    atmuscarella

    atmuscarella Well-Known Member

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    Honestly if you don't want to move to HD I would recommend buying a used SD TV. SD analog cable on a larger HD TV will look pretty bad. When I got my 50 inch plasma I still had 2 S2s one on a OTA converter box and one on a Dishnetwork SD STB. The pictures were fine on my old 26 tub TV, but honestly looked pretty bad on the plasma. Everything will work and you will have dark bars on both sides (unless you stretch the picture then it will be distorted).

    Good Luck,
     
  5. Jan 5, 2012 #5 of 52
    cannonz

    cannonz Well-Known Member

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    A lot of people even give perfectly working ones away because they can't move it. You could probably find someone in moving section to go with you to haul it for $50. Then have them put defective one on curb or if you have people that go thru your neighborhood that get metal and other things of value they would gladly come in house to get it (lot of $$ recyclables in there).
     
  6. Jan 5, 2012 #6 of 52
    Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    I hate those bars!! I really can't afford to upgrade my cable service and I certainly can't afford new TiVo boxes now. I've had one S2 with free lifetime since 2002 (I actually won this one from TiVo with free lifetime) and one S2 that I've been paying $6.95 for since 2005 (yes, I should have gotten lifetime but didn't.)

    I guess I'm in major trouble here unless I buy used.
     
  7. Jan 5, 2012 #7 of 52
    pdhenry

    pdhenry Recumbent

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    Sounds like the TV's not adjusted right. With an SD signal you need to either put up with the bars or zoom the picture to fill the screen (cutting off the top & bottom) without the fat-man distortion.
     
  8. Jan 5, 2012 #8 of 52
    Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    I'm actually on hold with Comcast. I have their Digital Starter package but I don't know what that is. I'm trying to find out if that's HD or not.
     
  9. Jan 5, 2012 #9 of 52
    Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    OK, I don't think my cable package is the problem. If I understand them correctly, the tuning adapter doesn't tune HD. I'd need an actual box but I'm not getting one. (Yes, I know I'm stubborn. I just want things to work!!)

    I think I'm more confused now. The tuning adapter won't do HD but it's now working to change the channels on my TiVo with the cute little cable I bought on eBay from a suggestion here. I can't get an actual cable box because it won't change the channels on the TiVo.

    I guess I'll have to just buy a TV and hope it works. Like I said, I don't really care about the HD at all. I just want a watchable picture.
     
  10. pdhenry

    pdhenry Recumbent

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    If you record at anything less than "Best Quality," watching on an HDTV could be painful. But you should be able to connect the coax directly to an HDTV and get the locals in HD as part of your basic service. But that could just make it even more painful to watch SD TiVo recordings...
     
  11. Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    I do record on "Best Quality" anyway. Less than that was painful on my SDTV.
     
  12. cannonz

    cannonz Well-Known Member

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    You must have a -digital transport adapter- not a tuning adapter (for sdv with a cable card) hooked up with one of those plug in cables. The DTA or cable box doesn't change channels on Tivo Tivo changes them on box. If you got the HD cable converter you would have to use IR blaster to change channels on it. But of course would still be SD from Tivo, so little point of it if you don't get any more channels than you get now.
     
  13. cannonz

    cannonz Well-Known Member

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    I assume if you have a DTA you probably only have what was their analog line up, I'm sure if you upgraded service would need a converter but may as well be a SD one unless you want to sometimes watch on HD TV direct from it not thru your Tivo.
     
  14. jrtroo

    jrtroo Chill- its just TV

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    If you are sure you don't want it, get the free TV, I'm sure you can find one. Many would be happy for you to cart it off, they are a pain and many have local communities that have recycling requirements to follow.

    If you were to start going with a hdtv, you would start to appreciate the differences. This leads to new tivo purchases (which is not as complicated as you would think, but no reason to explain the differences now). That is what happened to me.

    cannonz is right- you do not have a TA, you essentially have the comcast equivalent of the government-coupon boxes that were needed for over the air after the transition.
     
  15. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    What he apparently has is a DTA, which is the FCC mandated box for cable digital conversion. Has nothing to do with the OTA digital transition.

    To the OP: The Comcast Digital Starter package has a lot of HD channels but only includes one SD digital box or one CableCARD. Their HD boxes are extra (at least here they are) but if you had a TiVo HD or Premiere, the CableCARD wouldn't be any extra cost (unless it was one of the original TiVo 3's with HD, model TCD648250. They need 2 cards).

    If you did put in a digital TiVo, Comcast would have to give you a "user owned equipment" discount. Here it is $2.50 a month.
     
  16. Tony Chick

    Tony Chick Member

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    Sherman...
    The reason people look short and fat is because the TV (or Tivo) aspect ratio is set to stretch SD signals to fit the 16x9 screen. There should be a setting to keep 4x3 ratio and add black bars at the side.
     
  17. Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    OK, for anyone still playing along, I am now in the current century, I bought a 50" Panasonic plasma TV. It all works, no bars and I guess my aspect ratio is OK because people don't look short and fat. I'm sure it would look sharper in HD but that's not happening for now and it's doesn't bother me.
     
  18. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

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    Just use the TV's remote control to change the aspect ratio to 4:3. It will add "bars", but will make the picture the correct aspect ratio.

    I had HD capable Tivos before I had a HD TV.. My old 27" Trinitron died within the past year so I had to suddenly get a new TV. I ended up with a 42" plasma (open box, somewhere a bit under $400). I still end up watching a lot of 4:3 stuff (the aspect ratio you're seeing), or the letterboxed stuff from the SD (digital but "not HD") channels. I still watch the 4:3 and SD stuff largely because of disk space issues (HD takes up a LOT more space), and I use a non-HD hard drive/DVD recorder ALONG with my Tivos, every day.

    (Though I admit that I have noticed that the times I have switched to the HD input on my TV, even watching the SD channels ends up looking better -- some of that may be because I don't have the energy savings set the same on all inputs, so it's brighter, which instinctively "looks better" at first.)
     
  19. Hot4Bo

    Hot4Bo Finally an Avatar! TCF Club

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    I think I'm fine on whatever aspect ratio I have. I couldn't possibly stand watching with the "bars." That would drive me insane.
     
  20. Arcady

    Arcady Stargate Fan

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    If you stretch the image to get rid of the bars, then everyone is fat, circles become ovals, and depending on how you set it, things can get cut off.

    I don't understand why people have this urge to fill the screen, even when the content was created for a different type of device. Don't you want to watch the content the way it was intended, with nice tall thin people and circles? Does it bother you that there is empty space to the left and right of your current TV that has no image on it?
     

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